Archive for April, 2008

I haven’t had a bento since last Thursday and this is due to the cold from hell. On Friday Buddy had it pretty bad and so I stayed home to watch him. Unfortunately I picked it up from him and for the last 3 days I’ve felt that confusion, “Am I hot? Am I cold? I have a fever, yet I have chicken skin, wtf?” My head has felt like it was going to explode and Mr. Pikko has been hacking away next to me like coughing is going out of style. Thankfully, I do not have a cough, but he definitely does it enough for both of us. I don’t feel enough like a bitch to tell him his coughs are making my headache worse.

As if this cold wasn’t bad enough, my kids were taken in the night and replaced with little demons. Buddy has had what my sitter called “Night Terror” which basically means he shrieks his head off every hour and cannot be comforted. Picking him up is only wise if you enjoy hard kicks to your exceptionally tender stomach. This does wonders for our heads, obviously.

Add to that, I have committed many dastardly crimes against my sweet children. Mommy must learn the following when she feels better:

1. Mommy shall not declare it “brush teeth time” while Curious George is still on.
2. Mommy shall not fold jelly bread in half.
3. Mommy shall not threaten to delete The Rugrats Movie off the TiVo.
4. Mommy shall not give her children Apple Jacks in a play food bowl because it is “too small”.
5. Mommy shall not give milk when asked for milk, for her children really wanted juice.
6. Mommy shall not refuse to read Where The Wild Things Are more than three times in a row.
7. Mommy shall not pick out the wrong pink shirt to wear to school.
8. Mommy shall not say for the third day in a row that she’s been too sick to go buy more milk.
9. Mommy shall not pour into the green cup instead of the blue cup.
10. Mommy shall not state that it is “too dangerous” to turn around while driving to look at every pair of Fruit Loops miraculously stuck together.

I write this down now so that when I’m 90 years old and driving my children insane, I can say, HAY KIDS, go look at my blog entry on April 29, 2008, you’ll see why I’m so demanding!

Last Thursday before we became deathly ill we actually went out with some friends, which is now causing me to wonder if this is bachi for actually going out without our kidlets. D: We met at Yakiniku Million, which was an old haunt during the college days. Back in the late 1990s this place was that hole in the wall place that had some godly dish that everyone had to have. All of us would drool on the drive down (with the exception of one guy who was made to sit in the trunk of the hatchback since we only had one car) at the thought of their side order meat jun.

Millions had, hands down, THE best meat jun in town. All of us would order the same thing: side order meat jun. Sometimes we’d bring someone new and he’d order BBQ chicken and we’d look at him like he had two heads. They served it with a lettuce leaf and sometimes one last piece would be hiding under there, which was so awesome we started hiding a piece under the leaf just to have a surprise at the end of the meal. Then somehow, somewhen, they changed cooks or something. The meat jun is still really good, but it just doesn’t have that legendary taste that I remember. My current favorite is now O-Bok, at Manoa Marketplace. No sauce needed.

We ate with a different set of friends this time so we actually did order Yakiniku. I think this is Combination B or something:

Cooking the food on a grill:

Yakiniku is something Mr. Pikko just doesn’t get. He says he goes to a restaurant to get fed, not to cook his own food. He rescued both of us and ordered two side order meat jun.

There’s the meat jun in the middle. We ended up getting three plates because in the midst of the talking, our friends said, “Hey, this meat jun is pretty good!” Notice the lack of lettuce leaf though. 😦

I wasn’t really big on their sides as it was the fancier fare of Korean sides. I much rather have the take-out type veggies: bean sprouts, kim chee, mac salad, cabbage, chop chae, etc. Legendary meat jun missing aside, the food was still great. I was pretty relieved that I wasn’t the only one that took about half an hour to understand what the smoke vent was for…


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We had hamburger patties last night and this is something I’ve been finding increasingly hard to arrange nicely without repeating the same old things, so I decided to try making it into a fried rice. I don’t recall ever eating a hamburger fried rice, so hopefully it turns out all right.

The first thing I did was heat some olive oil in a little pan. Then I crumbled up the hamburger patty into small pieces and separated the rice as best I could. It was a mixture of white and brown rice. I had some already chopped up bell pepper and added that into the mix. After it had been cooking for a bit, I poured about a tablespoon of Mr. Yoshida’s sauce over it. I added the broccoli last, since I hadn’t thought about putting it in until I noticed it was rather bland in color.

Since lacquer boxes cannot stand high heat, I lined the box with some lettuce to help protect it. I poured everything in and arranged the pieces as best I could with chopsticks. For snacks I have baby carrots, some of those new Brother’s Potato Crisps (freeze dried, ZERO oil, ZERO fat, yahoo!!), salsa, and popcorn.

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My apologies for the technical snafoo yesterday with my picture. I went to look at my Flickr and was like WTF?!? Where is my picture??? *sigh*

Grandma J made shoyu chicken the other night. It was still on the bone so I refrigerated it overnight so that it would be hard and then in the morning was able to pull it off the bone in one nice piece. I wanted it in one piece so that I could slice it nicely. When the meat is warm and soft it tends to flake and looks terrible. I laid the slices on top of some furikake rice and then poured some Mr. Yoshida’s sauce onto the chicken since it was looking a little pale from refrigeration.

I added broccoli which I had let sit in some hot water heated up in the microwave in a Pyrex cup. I find this is much easier than boiling water in a pot and it cooks the broccoli just fine. I cut a slice of takuan into little wedges and tucked it into some empty space near the end of the box.

We have this wild tomato plant that is growing from a seed of an old tomato from our potted plants. It’s growing under the AC unit and it’s CRAZY huge. I wish we were allowed to grow plants in the ground, but we’re not. I’ve been letting it grow just to see how many tomatoes it spits out. One was nicely ripe and we picked that one. I had told Baby Girl two other ones were only dark orange so we’d pick them in the morning for my bento. Then we went out to the yard and the two were gone!!! We think the birds got them. I’m really surprised she didn’t blame it on the beavers.

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First off, lunch from yesterday!

We met at the UH Campus Center and ate at Yummy’s Korean BBQ. I got a MINI bbq chicken plate. Yes, people, that there is a “mini” plate. People here eat so much frickin’ food that you can now buy a “mini” plate of too much food for just $6.95. Seriously, when did we get to be such porkers? I was too scared to think about what a full size plate looked like. I skipped the rice to get an extra veggie side. I ended up getting chop chae (the noodles), bean sprouts, and choi sum. Veggies at Yummy’s is really good. I think I’d put them second behind Gina’s sides.

Today I took the day off to take Baby Girl to an allergist and was very sad to hear that he was prescribing adrenaline shots for emergencies because this means my daughter is one of those kids you hear about that can die from food allergies. He made this very clear to me, hammering into my head that she can go braindead in minutes… Not that I mind a doctor like that. I’d rather have an honest doctor than one who sugarcoats everything. We’ve got some adjusting to do that’s for sure. I figure I have at least six months of “I WANT PEANUT BUTTER TOAST!!!!!!!!!” tantrums to put up with before she accepts it. Definitely not looking forward to those. I’ve already hidden the Costco-size jar of Skippy…

With this rather sobering news, I decided to fill the prescription in Mililani Town Center, where I knew there was a ramen shop. I dropped it off and headed over to Genki Ramen.

I decided that I was getting into a miso ramen rut, so picked something new and ordered their Mabo Tofu Ramen. I left my brain at the allergist’s office and realized I was sitting in a cash-only restaurant with only a dollar in my purse, so I had to tell the waitress to hold my table while I went to go get more moolah. When I came back, my ramen was waiting for me.

I really enjoyed this! It tasted like mapo tofu yet still had a ramen-y soup taste to it. It was slightly spicy and the noodles weren’t too thick. Ever since I ate at Kiwami Ramen I’ve found that I don’t really care for fat noodles too much. As I was eating this reporter guy was going around talking to people about the Town Center, so after I was done I gave him my card to come read my blog. This was only the second time I’d eaten at Genki Ramen but the first time was so long ago I don’t remember what the food was like. It gets two thumbs up from me now!

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UFC 83 & Kokua Festival

I have no bento today since I am going out to lunch with my old friend who just moved back to Oahu and is working here at UH again. YaY!

Here is the picture of the miso ramen I had at this place in Manoa Marketplace called Nishi Mon Cho. To be honest, it wasn’t that great. The bean sprouts were really bland and the miso was congealed at the bottom, so I didn’t know where the taste was until I was halfway through the bowl.

This past weekend was pretty awesome. Saturday was UFC 83, Georges St. Pierre vs. Matt Serra. I was, of course, rooting for GSP since he’s mega hot and I can’t stand Serra. He completely dominated him in awesome GSP fashion and it was great to watch. Rich Franklin looked great as well and it was pretty amusing to watch him fight against a completely gassed Travis Lutter.

My mom paid us a visit on Sunday and so knowing her love for movies, we went to see Horton Hears a Who with her again. This was Buddy’s third time! He loves “BIG tv”. We ate at Sumo Ramen and I had a miso ramen. People are going to be like, wow, Pikko is a ramen addict now. True story!

After that, it was time to drop them off and head down to the Kokua Festival. I had bought tickets online by making a donation to the Kokua Foundation. Go Jimmy Go, Paula Fuga, Mason Jennings, Tim Reynolds, Dave Matthews, and Jack Johnson were playing. No disrespect meant to Jack Johnson since he does have a great voice and lots of catchy songs, but we went purely for Dave Matthews. He’d never played in Hawaii before and the chance to see him live was just too good to be true. Things went pretty well, Dave didn’t come on until 6:30, so we got to the area at around 4:45 or so. We turned into the zoo parking lot (against my advice) and amazingly, someone pulled out right in front of us. So.. parking was a breeze. So lucky!

We decided to go into Waikiki to find a place to eat and soon found out that there really weren’t that many places to eat on Kalakaua Avenue. We walked for 20 minutes and then I figured since I’d dragged Mr. Pikko almost clear across Waikiki, we would be able to just eat at Kiwami Ramen which was A-OK with me! I got the Miso Ramen with Tasty Egg (which you can kind of see peeking out of the dashi). It was VERY good! The noodles were perfect and the soup very tasty. I didn’t even mind the chili peppers. Their chasu is very soft, two big thumbs up!

We got back to the Waikiki Shell just in time and found our seats in time. The announcer called their appearance “epic” and “historic” and then just like that, Dave Matthews came on stage. Now, I have a thing for mellow male voices but there is just something special and magical about the voice of Dave Matthews. I actually had tears in my eyes during three of his songs. Maybe it was because it feels like he’s singing to your soul.

I’d never heard of Tim Reynolds before this concert and they made a great duo. They played for a little under an hour and a half and I can happily say that my drawn out Valentine’s Day gift was a smashing success with Mr. Pikko.

My only complaint was definitely the stage camera operator. That dude needs to get another job because every time they had him focusing in on the people on stage, I swear, he’d suddenly drop the camera angle down to the stage floor and they’d have to shift to another camera. My pictures didn’t come out so great since we were kind of in the back, but I was able to take the above one by going down the aisle to snap one.

Luckily there was a big screen that we could watch whenever they’d zoomed in on him.

The festival was very sold out, so a lot of people camped out on the grass in Kapiolani Park just to listen to them from outside. I took a picture during a break.

Jack Johnson on the big screen. He played a lot of songs with his band, then later came back out to play by himself and with other singers. We stayed just in case he sang with Dave later in the show…

Here I am with Mr. Pikko, who is blotted out with a picture of Pokko’s face. He doesn’t like to have pictures online and so out of spite, I figure I might as well dig in the Mr. Pikko embarassment bit. ^_^

I got THE last Kokua Festival T-shirt they had there, taken right off the wall of the only merchandise booth left open. I love fitting into small size shirts. 😀

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I’m sorry for the lack of bento lately, but I’ve been really busy and tired this week! I have a lot of food to show though! I’m still missing one picture from lunch yesterday and can post that next week or something.

Monday and Tuesday I had to help at the Pacific Rim Disabilities Conference. It was in Waikiki and so during lunch on Tuesday we went across the street to the Waikiki Shopping Plaza or Center or whatever it’s called. There was a food court downstairs and we wandered in and I saw this place called Kiwami Ramen. It was full of Japanese people and the prices were great, so I gave it a try. Unfortunately I couldn’t try their extensive menu inside at the bar (which served Kirin!) because two of my coworkers were eating elsewhere. I picked from their small take-out menu and got Shoyu Ramen with a Tasty Egg added in.

It was really oily, but it was REALLY good. This one had their “thin noodle” and it was perfectly cooked. The tasty egg was great, though I didn’t eat the yolk. It seemed to be a hard boiled egg simmered in dashi. I definitely have to drag someone down there to eat with me sometime.

Wednesday I was extremely lazy and had this craving for cold tofu, so I brought bentos of fruits and veggies and a whole package of tofu. I didn’t even bother to pack it in a box, I just bought the whole container and cut it open at work. I ate the whole block of tofu, LOL. And I’m not talking about the half block, I ate a whole block!

Baby carrots and edamame, carefully placed side by side.

Here I have a plum cut into wedges and then some green grapes we got at Costco.

I brought this for lunch yesterday, but we ended up walking to Manoa Marketplace to eat at the ramen shop up there. I forget the name of it and haven’t done the picture yet, so I’ll give more info on that later. So… this is what I’m eating today. It’s beef broccoli and I garnished it with a tofu daisy and bell pepper flowers. I cut a thin slice of tofu and cut it out with my flower veggie cutter. Buddy ate the leftovers. I bought red bell peppers to eat with eggs, so you guys will probably be seeing a lot of red in my bentos in the coming weeks. 😀

My second layer has strawberries and green grapes again.

I bet you’re wondering what 120×520 is. That is my goal. The wedding is at the end of May, so I am aiming to be 120 by 5/20. Everytime I want to eat bad things or go for seconds, I will tell myself “120 by 520!” and hopefully that will keep me in line. It’s my weight loss mantra. I was up to 132 last week, but with the mantra this week am back down to 130. 120 by 520!

One last thing… I know I have quite a few Oahu readers, so I thought I’d mention that my workplace has recently opened up their diabetes study to the entire community of Oahu. If you or anyone you know has diabetes and would like more information on how you can participate, please visit our website: Live Healthy… Work Well. Tell them you heard about it on my blog!

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Curse you, teaspoons!!

I was pretty bothered by the teaspoon debacle since a few people seemed to agree on one thing: 1/4 teaspoon pepper isn’t that much. I started thinking that they had to be right and something was very wrong in Pikko Teaspoon Land. On a hunch, I picked out my teaspoon, my 1/4 teaspoon, and my 1/8 teaspoon.

I KNEW I WASN’T CRAZY!! If you can’t tell by the sizes in the picture alone, I will tell you that I was able to pour TWO “1/4” teaspoons water into ONE teaspoon. I found a different brand of measuring spoon in my drawer that said 1/2 teaspoon and when I poured the “1/4” teaspoon in, it filled it up perfectly.

That’s not all that’s wrong too! My 1/8 teaspoon is wrong too, since I can fit FOUR “1/8” teaspoons into a teaspoon. And it’s not like I’m making a mistake with the lower case t and the upper case T because as you can clearly see, it spells out “teaspoon” on it. I’m very disappointed because I love this set of spoons and I’ve been relying on it for a while now…

At least now you guys can be like, “Wow, half a teaspoon of pepper in 2 large eggs. Yeesh!” ^_^

I will not have a bento until Wednesday, as I will be attending and helping at the Pac Rim Conference on Monday and Tuesday for work.

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